New Crazy Candidate Issue...

We made an offer to a woman with 2.5 years of experience for an entry-level administrative role.  She counters our offer saying she thinks because of her "extensive" experience she deserves an offer of a salary that is $15K more than our offer (which is actually high given her relatively little experience).  Remember, she only has 2.5 years of work experience including the work she did while she was attending college.

We think she may turn out to be a management nightmare and now are hoping she will not accept.  But now what if she does? 


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  • You made an offer.  Did you do it in writing?  If so, did you set a deadline for the offer to be accepted?  If so, the safest thing to do is to wait out the offer period.  If the offer does not include a deadline, revoke the offer after a reasonable period if she doesn't accept it (2 weeks will probably do).  Keep in mind that you can always manage the situation during the offer period and either get her to tell you to take a long walk off a short pier or fix her attitude.  For example, just give her straight talk.  "Ms. Smith, 2.5 years doesn't really constitute extensive experience in this role.  Moreover, this role simply doesn't merit the pay level that you have requested.  The Company has extended a perfectly fair offer for you to join the team and it is non-negotiable.  Please weigh your options and respond to us by <insert date here>."

    If the offer is not in writing, and if you really want her to go away, then tell her you reject her counter proposal and thank her for thinking of your company as a possible employer and wish her luck in her career pursuit.  If she says that she'll take the original offer, tell her that the original offer came off the table when she made a counter proposal.  Rescinding an offer is generally "more" "dangerous" than a termination or a failure to hire but not hiring someone because their response to the offer displays an attitude issue or a salary demand that is beyond the scope of the position is certainly reasonable.  Consider what state you are in before anybody allows their emotions to push them into an aggressive move that probably wont be necessary if the candidate's attitude is managed correctly.

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